Ahead of tomorrow’s announcement of the inflation figure that will dictate 2021 fare increases, the passenger watchdog has joined calls for rail companies to offer better value for money fares.
Transport Focus said its survey showed that around two-thirds of those who commuted by train prior to the pandemic expect to continue to work from home more often in the future.
It called on the Government to reform the fares and ticketing system to offer better value for money, going beyond a fares freeze and including the roll-out of more flexible season tickets for people returning to their place of work part-time.
Chief executive Anthony Smith said: ‘The Government need to get train companies to offer a combination of cut-price deals, carnet style “bundles”, flexible season tickets for commuters and better value for money fares across the board.
‘To get Britain moving again in the coming months, tickets that fit the way we live and travel now are needed, not just season tickets designed for city gents in the last century.
‘Like the Government’s restaurant deal, we need a ‘Head Out to Help Out’ campaign to help get the country on the move again, boost the economy and reduce traffic on our roads.’
Transport Focus said carnet ticket offers such as bundles of ten tickets for the price of eight are needed for them to see rail travel as a genuinely attractive option again following the impact of coronavirus.
Separately, the RMT said its report showed that the introduction of flexible season tickets will save commuters thousands of pounds.
It called on the Government to implement a simple national scheme for flexible rail ticketing with immediate effect.